Tuesday, January 17th, 2017

Surprise Call-Up sent student to Afghanistan

Certainly anyone who signs up with the National Guard to serve their country can expect to serve overseas, but you never know how your service will be needed.

Brandon Maxwell, a 20 year old, former Palmyra-Macedon graduate (Class of 2010) began classes at Buffalo State University in September of 2010. Brandon completed his first year and was anticipating a return in the Fall, when he received a call to report to his National Guard base in Niagara Falls. “I was told to report in 14 days (July 12) and I did not know what I was being called in to do or where I was going,” said Brandon.

He remembers being excited when he was told his unit would mustering out to Kandahar Province in Afghanistan as part of the 914th Security Forces there.

“Being over there was a real eye-opener for me,” explained Brandon. “We have so much, and they (The Afghani people) have nothing. But they are all smiles, especially the children, and they are thrilled to get a bottled water or a piece of candy.” He also noted that they worked very well with the Afghan forces. Everyone wanted to work together and cooperate. “We were all like family,” said Maxwell.

Arriving back in the United States in February, Brandon was welcomed home in Macedon by his mom and dad, Pam and Tom Maxwell, and his brothers, Dillon (19), and Jacob (15).

Brandon also received a big welcome back from the Town of Macedon and Town Clerk Judy Gravino, who, with her fellow Town Clerk’s sent packages to Brandon and his unit while they were gone. “My daughter and son both know the family and we were happy to have a local soldier to send things to,” said Gravino. Judy said the Town and the Clerk’s association also kept in touch with Brandon on Facebook, when he was able to post.

Unsure where his country will need him next, Brandon will return to college, after spending the summer helping his dad at the family ice cream business “Maggie Moos”.

“I would volunteer immediately for a slot to go back, if it was available,” said the proud soldier.